The news that Adidas has recently overtaken Jordan as the second-most popular sports footwear brand in the United States (behind Nike of course) has been making the rounds over the past few days, with many market analysts and basketball fans in general surprised by the surge in popularity from the German brand.
But it seems Jordan's fall from footwear grace is even worse than once thought.
According to a report from Versus Reviews, and Bryan Kalbrosky who wrote the article, Jordan Brand has also fallen out of favor with NBA players, with many of the league's athletes opting to wear sneakers from the Kobe range rather than a pair of Jordans.
As you can see from the graphic above, 58 NBA players are seen wearing Kobe's on a game-to-game basis, whereas only 50 are repping Jordans, something which was once thought of as impossible.
LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Durant round out the top 5.
“He has exclusively worn the Kobe X Low model for the past two seasons, constantly declining to switch into Nike’s latest and greatest. The brand made him a custom pair of the new Kobe A.D. for the 2017 All-Star Game, yet he still opted to switch back into his beloved Kobe X just before tipoff. At one point, the brand even wanted him to debut the new React Hyperdunk 2017 during this year’s playoffs — but he stuck with the Kobes.”
The Nike Kobe AD’s are the most popular choice of footwear for players, with 33 wearing them. Only one Jordan shoe finished in the Top 10 of most popular shoes in the NBA, the Air Jordan XXI's, with 13 players choosing to wear them on-court.
The most obvious explanation for this shift in popularity is as new, younger players enter the league each season, they grew up watching Kobe Bryant dominate the league, not Jordan, and are therefore more inclined to wear Kobe's on the court.
We can only hope Jordan's brand power doesn't fall any further, as the Jumpman logo is one of the most iconic images in basketball culture.
Thanks to Bryan Kalbrosky for an amazing information about this article.